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« March 2007 | Main | May 2007 »

April 2007

April 30, 2007

Out: finance, "pure quantitative skills", and "econometrics and other arcane quantitative tools".

In: networking, teamwork, listening, leadership, and business ethics.

Welcome to the MBA, 2007.

On the other hand, maybe, given time, Jeff Sandefer's model will gain market share. His curriculum seems a bit light on listening and teamwork.

Interesting working paper on student evaluations of professors. While the author is particularly concerned about evaluations in law schools, a lot of the research she cites seems to apply to evaluations in general. Consider this:

Conventional student evaluations strongly mirror the professor’s smiles, gestures, and other mannerisms, rather than the professor’s knowledge, clarity, organization, or other qualities more clearly associated with good teaching. The way in which a professor walks into the room or smiles at the class can affect student ratings much more substantially than what the professor says or writes on the blackboard. [footnote omitted] Evaluations collected from students after no more than five minutes’ exposure to a professor accurately predict assessments gathered at semester’s end, leaving little doubt that these evaluations reflect relatively superficial behaviors. [footnote omitted]

To paraphrase Billy Crystal, "It is better to look good than to be good. And you look maahvelous!"

A Canadian psychologist tells a student newspaper that he once--in 1974--used LSD. The psychologist is stopped at the US border and made to sign a letter that he violated the U.S. Controlled Substances Act because U.S. customs officials had Googled him. (English translation; original article in French is here.) The psychologist might now be prevented from entering the U.S. for life.

Watch yourselves, people. Google Remembers All.

Link courtesy of my colleague, Denis Pelletier.

Vernon Smith on Asperger's

Vernon Smith, Nobel Laureate in Economics, talks about having Asperger's Syndrome.

New econ blog

A new blog worth keeping an eye on, Bluematter: "An occasionally tactless economist opines on economics, politics and everything else."

April 27, 2007

Excellent advice on how to give an academic talk.

Gian-Carlo Rota's "Ten Lessons of an MIT Education".

Forbes magazine's "Ten Sexiest Cars".

Maybe an old joke, but one I hadn't heard before: "What Do You Do With a Six Foot Asshole?"

April 26, 2007

H. Jenkins on market definition

Not that there's a lot to choose from, but Holman Jenkins's column yesterday (Wall Street Journal; probably subscription only) was one of the funniest pieces on U.S. antitrust policy I've ever seen.

With an ingenuity no doubt born of a healthy consulting fee, a reputable economist who shall remain nameless recently produced an "analysis" arguing that satellite radio is a distinct marketplace for antitrust purposes because -- get this -- "indecent audio content has gravitated" to satellite radio as a result of federal indecency rules. . . .

"Market definition" has become a Kafkaesque cornucopia of pliable concepts to maximize the antitrust enforcer's opportunity to tyrannize over the private sector.

McAfee's course on pricing

R. Preston McAfee's Spring 2007 course on pricing.

(Professor McAfee also offers some spot-on criticisms of Adobe Acrobat. Not content to just criticize, he explains how you can use free programs to completely avoid the need for Acrobat.)

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